Keeping the dream alive
URGENT repairs have started on Dreamland's cinema ahead of plans by Thanet council to buy the fun- park site next year.
Emergency works notices were issued by Thanet council to the owners amid fears the building would not survive another harsh winter without irreversible damage.
PROTECTION: Workmen put up scaffolding around the Dreamland cinema GIPH20101221C-0011_C
Builders are now working on initial restoration at the cinema, a Grade II* listed structure.
The Isle of Thanet Gazette understands that Thanet council is also preparing to issue a compulsory purchase order for the entire site in the new year.
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The fun park's current owners, the Margate Town Centre Regeneration Company which includes businessman Jimmy Godden as a major player, were due to have handed over part of the site to the Dreamland Trust in the summer.
The trust is working on plans to reopen the site in 2012 with vintage rides and a museum.
Thanet council and the trust have been in talks with MTCRC but they are now ready to take steps to issue a Compulsory Purchase Notice.
It is understood that MTCRC is not planning to oppose the notice.
Over the next four weeks, Minster-based IOT scaffolding will put up 190 tonnes of scaffolding around the cinema, the former entrance and the building that used to be the ballroom.
The scaffolding will pave the way for surveyors to take a detailed look at both the exterior and interior of the building and assess the cinema's cultural gems, including the Compton Theatre organ, which still stands under the bingo-hall stage.
Dave Collard of the Save Dreamland Campaign said: "On a personal note, I have wanted to see something like this start for many years.
"Everyone has been unsure and people tell me they have heard it all before, so it is wonderful to see something happening."
The Scenic Railway is next. Full report page 3